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    Ashton Canal

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  1. Can we attach any significance to the red waste skip next to what I think is the tug Aleida, an interesting boat with what i imagine is now a rare air start Widdop twin diesel?
  2. That's the one! The only time I have seen a working Amphicar was at the Floating Bridge (Higher Ferry). Yes, would have been about 1964. I didn't imagine it then.
  3. Moored less than a mile from where the engine was built and very likely the only operational National engine of any type resident in Ashton Under Lyne.(part of Tameside Metropolitan Borough since 1974)
  4. We recovered several of those poles from the canal at Guide Bridge, Brookside sidings. it would be when BR gave up loose coupled wagons in 19mumblemumble. they acquired a definite curve of the pole after years of use, levering the coupling on or off using one of the buffers as a fulcrum.They also got damaged levering the "hand" brakes on the wagon sides. The curly ends have since got new poles and now used as an excellent prop cleaner. Talking of recovery of transport things from the canal, late 1960's also at Guide Bridge, a long bamboo shaft with hook that used to be for replacing errant trolley bus trolleys at the 219x turn round place on the canal bridge. The overhead "points" were worked with a hand pull on the traction pole by the bus conductor. Sometimes went to school on the trolleybus in bad weather, fare was 1d. Then there were the brand new production Deltics on delivery to Doncaster from Newton le Willows 1961, D9007 and later D9009, absolutely fantastic at the time .(the Deltics were passing through,not in the canal!) More recently, like 35 years ago, passing the sidings on the boat and a Sulzer Type 2 came off the road with a heck of a crash, all wheels on the floor.
  5. Some sprinkler systems don't use pumps for the actual fire, a pre- pressurized water tank ,fed by air compressor is installed. When a sprinkler head is activated in the fire area the tank water is discharged by virtue of the tank pressure. I wonder if you could use the normal boat water tank for this? You would need to keep plenty of water in the tank and maybe a reducing valve for the domestic supply?
  6. I heard a rather strange tale , third hand , about permanent mooring in Castlefield. Some boats there do not have Bridgewater licenses,though they may have CRT license,BSS,Insurance. Consequently, they are fined £40 per week by B.C.C. The moorers consider this good value for money for a central Manchester spot. Bridgewater make more money that way than from an annual license , so no pressure to do anything about it. Can anyone confirm the facts about this , it seems unlikely to me?
  7. If you need one of those on a boat, you're in big trouble, it's either sinking or burning.However, it will easily pressurize the domestic plumbing , 50psi and around 500gallons a minute. fuel consumption might be a problem😃 Mention of Godwin pumps, we have a fire fighting pump by them fitted with a Lister SR1 that runs flat out , a bit scary for what is usually an old plodder engine.
  8. A close relative is a coastguard helicopter pilot. They get a call out one evening a few months ago to the Peak District. A man has fallen off a cliff face and seriously injured. He's airlifted to hospital (Sheffield?). According to information at the time , he had been drinking and thought it would be a great idea to do some "free-climbing" . The 'copter is then on its way back to base and there's another call to airlift an injured person from a ferry in the North Sea.They return to base for a quick re-fuel and go out to the ferry some where off Cromer by this time. A woman passenger has broken her arm in an accident on the ship, she is then airlifted to hospital......But, it turns out that she sustained the injury before the ship had sailed , she could have left the ship while it's still tied up and gone to hospital by ambulance, that, however, might have slightly delayed the ship's sailing so somebody in authority apparently decided it would best not to delay sailing and cost us taxpayers several kilopounds an hour for an emergency call out,not without risks associated with airlifting people off ships at sea. Not blaming the injured woman here, but there's a distinct shortage of common sense around by my way of thinking.
  9. Be very careful near the limit of navigation on the Irwell,just past Victoria Station. The river bed becomes shallow with rocks and debris. Also, the level can drop very suddenly if the automatic sluices open at Mode Wheel,usually at times of heavy rain (like the last few months!) . I have seen the river drop by a couple of feet in a matter of minutes. If you happen to be at the top end and notice a sudden increase in flow, get out quick as you can and head down stream, otherwise you could be stuck mid river for some time.
  10. Anyone had reliability problems with mains driven leds? I have,they don't seem to last the manufacturers claimed 15000 to 20000hrs. Their life seems to be a lot better than incandescents but only a bit better than flourescent and CFL. Its the driver circuit (in the base) that fails, the led device itself is usually ok. Cheapo components in the driver that can't stand surges and spikes in the mains ? Dimmable leds? Forget it with a conventional old fashioned style dimmer switch- the leds fail after a few hours.
  11. There were a lot of these used on the Ship Canal as standby power for the hydraulic systems at locks and bridges. I don't know if some are still in place. Contact MSC or Peel or whatever to see if they still have spares? I may have some documentation somewhere for this model of engine, obtained years ago from a retired Petter's engineer .There was some connection with Fowler's at Leeds as well, the latter's diesel shunters often had McLaren engines. The radiator on your engine is a bought in item from Reliance(or Serck?) , its design being very similar to that fitted to Ruston engines of similar age and size.This may be an indication that engine parts were manufactured other than by McClaren and slightly more obtainable.
  12. My mate Bob has a rather good OO scale model railway that features ,amongst other things,a narrow lock on a derelict canal with a PFCS (you remember that organisation?) working party active in and around the lock- features an Ace barrow hoist, a series 2 LWB Land Rover, a wheelbarrow or two, some scale mud and assorted debris. I think it is all scratch built though.
  13. Both horses appear to be fitted with solar panels and the vessel looks like one of those whale harpoon boats used in South Georgia.
  14. That's OK if you have a grand or two to spend on your IT provision. Me, I like to upcycle old kit at minimum cost,more as a challenge than financial reasons . My free 2006 Dell does very well with Ubuntu 18. For example, I plugged an old scanner/printer into it last week, instantly recognised it, got hold of the drivers without prompting and was ready to use in a few seconds. This post is coming from my 12year old iMac, it's been great until a week or two ago when support for the OS was ended by Apple and it can't be upgraded any more. Safari has started to go a bit flaky, so switched to Firefox browser but it's the start of the end for the Mac, unless I install Linux instead of OSX. I visited the Apple shop last week, I will not be spending four figure sums there when there are free and quite adequate Linux options available.? As for Microsoft, I have thankfully managed without it except for XP on an old laptop that runs the diagnostics and things for my Rover 75.
  15. Joel on the Hollinwood Branch of the Ashton Canal, date I think 1933. The last boat to come through to here from the main line. This canal suffered badly from mining subsidence, to the extent that it was found necessary to have a pile of ballast kept at Cinderland bridge (near this photo) to be loaded into empty boats to get them through the bridgehole.Apart from maintenence duties Joel was used to deliver coal to the lock keeper at Waterhouses(Daisy Nook) and elsewhere on the LNER canals.The pumping engine at Waterhouses was stopped permanently about this time and the canal became derelict soon after.
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